This is a no-nonsense article for mature Christians. If you are not mature, then I really don’t expect you to “get it”. And I imagine you will even struggle with the views expressed here.
I am not discounting anyone’s suffering, and I would not want to change places with some people whose suffering I have heard about. But mature Christians need to rise above the emotional response and understand things at a deeper level.
So often we read stories about people who are suffering, and they cry out, “Where was God in this?” or “Why do I deserve this?”, “Why did God let this happen to me?”
Basically, they are saying that God should have intervened in their lives to protect them from any harm or suffering, or for that matter, anything they don’t like.
Now, as I said, their suffering is real, and painful, and I wouldn’t want to change places with them, and my heart goes out to them.
But God is not our servant. We are his.
Servants do not demand things of their masters. Honestly, I am convinced that God is compassionate, and I am sure it breaks his heart too to see the suffering of the people he created. But he has a big picture solution in mind and he is achieving that. It is not his job to “look after us”, and protect us from anything that we don’t like. Wouldn’t that make him our servant?
The pagans have this attitude to their gods. If they appease their god with some kind of offering or ritual, then they expect their god to do something in return for them. But that is clearly a “god” designed by man.
Our God, The God, is not like that. It would not matter if we spent our whole life in devotion to him - in the end he would owe us nothing. He already gave us his son - a gift which far outweighs a thousand lifetimes we could spend serving him.
But even if he hadn’t. He is God. We are created beings. He does not owe us anything. Period.
We need to get rid of this pagan mentality.
And we need to remember who is whose servant.